Forward Scattering Meter for Visibility Measurements

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Atmospheric aerosols, containing water, constitute most of the air during non-ideal weather conditions including fog, haze, and mist. These aerosols cause light to be attenuated while propagating through the atmosphere causing the effective visibility to decrease. The visibility is dependent on the extinction coefficient of the aerosol distribution that can be found using Mie scattering theory. In the case of a real environment a distribution of particle sizes must be considered where the particles present are described by a weighted value relative to the number density. In this thesis a forward scattering meter is devised that measures the amount of scattered light at a specific forward scattering angle under the assumption that the scattered light is linearly related to the extinction coefficient of different weather conditions. To validate the design, it will be compared against a commercial visibility meter along with using a fog chamber to simulate various weather conditions.